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Football news

Koscielny wants Sanchez to stay

Arsenal players want Alexis Sanchez to stay at the club next season, defender Laurent Koscielny has said.

Sanchez has scored 28 goals in 49 appearances this season despite not being an out-and-out striker, but media reports have suggested he is unhappy at the club.

“Firstly, he scored a lot of goals for us but his first job is not to be a striker, it is more midfield but he is an unbelievable player. He just wants to fight and have the best result for the club,” Koscielny told Sky Sports.

“When you have a player like this in your team, to show the way we want to grow together, it is important and I think he has a lot of players behind him to keep him.”

Sakho move must make sense – Parish

Crystal Palace are keen to sign on-loan defender Mamadou Sakho on a permanent basis from Liverpool but the move must fulfil the financial expectations of both Premier League clubs, Eagles chairman Steve Parish said.

Sakho, who joined Palace in January, helped the club keep four clean sheets and record five wins in eight league appearances before he sustained a season-ending knee injury in April.

Media reports suggested Liverpool had set an asking price of £30 million for the centre back.

“The money needs to work for us and for Liverpool,” Parish said.

“I’m sure there’ll be a negotiation on that. If we can make it work, of course we’d like to, I’m not going to try and be coy or clever on that. He’s a very good player and I think he likes being with us. We like him. Let’s hope we can do it.”

Henrichs signs Leverkusen deal

Germany international Benjamin Henrichs has pledged his future to Bayer Leverkusen by signing a two-year contract extension.

The versatile 20-year-old, who can play at full-back or in midfield, is now committed to the Bundesliga club until June 2022.

He has made 36 appearances in all competitions for 12th-placed Leverkusen this season, including seven Champions League outings.

Henrichs said: “It’s great for me that the club I’ve been at since I was 13 years old has given me all these opportunities.

“I’m very happy I’ve made it as a professional and an international at Bayer 04.”

Foxes chief buys into Belgian club

Leicester owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha has agreed to buy Oud-Heverlee Leuven, according to the Belgian club.

The Foxes chairman has made the move through his company King Power and second division side OH Leuven say the deal will be formally done after due diligence is completed.

An agreement has been signed by the club and King Power, with OH Leuven saying the bid was the only “clear, written and coherent proposal within the time limit”.

This season OH Leuven avoided relegation to the third tier.

Mazzarri to part ways with Watford

Italian Walter Mazzarri will step down as manager of Watford after the final game of the season against Manchester City on Sunday.

Former Inter coach Mazzarri joined Watford last May, replacing Quique Sanchez Flores, and guided the club to Premier League safety.

“After the Board discussed with Walter Mazzarri the club’s future goals and aspirations, it was decided he will be stepping down from his position as the club’s Head Coach after the final game of the 2016/17 season,” Watford said in a statement.

“We thank Walter and his staff for the contribution they have made to Watford Football Club over the past year.”

Everton’s Bolasie steps up recovery

Everton forward Yannick Bolasie hopes to start jogging within a fortnight as he steps up his recovery from knee surgery.

The 27-year-old, who joined the club from Crystal Palace last summer, has had two operations since sustaining cruciate ligament damage in December.

The DR Congo international said: “Everything’s going good. I couldn’t ask for the knee to be in a better position right now.

“It’s too early to say when I’ll be back playing. I think when I start running then I’ll have a better picture of where I’m at. I’m hoping to start light jogging in two weeks and then I’ll know what we are looking at.”

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